Hidden Belgium: Sint-Pauluskerk Garden

Hidden Belgium: Sint-Pauluskerk Garden

A neoclassical coach entrance leads into a secret garden next to Antwerp’s Sint Pauluskerk. Not many people know about this mysterious spot where you discover, hidden from view, a strange religious folly.

The work represents the Crucifixion on Mount Calvary. It features a rocky mountain crowded with 63 statues of saints, angels and prophets. A cave at the foot of the mountain contains a grim vision of Hell.

Two brothers, both devout Dominican friars, worked for half a century, from 1697 to 1747, to create this theatrical Catholic folly. The French poet Baudelaire dismissed it as ‘ridiculous’. But then he would.

Derek Blyth’s hidden secret of the day: Derek Blyth is the author of the bestselling “The 500 Hidden Secrets of Belgium”. He picks out one of his favourite hidden secrets for The Brussels Times every day.

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